Internet Society's New Policy Brief Series Provides Concise Information On Critical Internet Issues

Have you ever wanted to quickly find out information on key Internet policy issues from an Internet Society perspective? Have you wished you could more easily understand topics such as net neutrality or Internet privacy? This year, the Internet Society has taken on a number of initiatives to help fill a need identified by our community to make Internet Governance easier to understand and to have more information available that can be used to inform policymakers and other stakeholders about key Internet issues. more»

Governments Shouldn't Play Games with the Internet

Governments often use small players as pawns in their global games of chess. Two weeks ago the European Court of Justice invalidated the EU-US Safe Harbor ("Safe Harbor") framework, turning Internet businesses into expendable pawns in a government game. But for the past fifteen years, Safe Harbor allowed data flows across the Atlantic -- fostering innovation and incredible economic development. more»

Freedom on the Internet: Where Does Your Country Stand?

Out of the 3 billion users on the Internet, how many can trust that their online communications will not be monitored or censored? How many feel safe that they can express their opinions online and will not be arrested for their ideas? How many feel confident in communicating anonymously online? For us at the Internet Society this is a key element of an Internet of opportunity: Internet access is only meaningful if people can trust that their fundamental rights will be respected and protected online as well as offline. more»

Back from RightsCon Manila: Trading Freedoms for Security?

In Asia -- a region that at various points in its recent history has been a hotbed for civil unrest, secessionist movements and political instability -- the line between national security and public interest can be difficult to draw. A session organised by the Internet Society at the recently held RightsCon Southeast Asia in Manila shed some light on the perceived trade-offs between national security objectives and digital rights, in particular freedom of expression and privacy. more»

The EFF and Hanlon's Razor

The EFF has just posted a shallower than usual deeplink alleging an "email encryption downgrade attack" by ISPs intent on eavesdropping on their customers. They, along with VPN provider Golden Frog, have additionally complained to the FCC reporting this. Here, they've just noticed something that's common across several hotel / airport wifi networks... more»

Rape in the DNS

It took three years for ICANN to issue a breach notice to BizCn over the invalid WHOIS record behind RAPETUBE[DOT]ORG. Throughout the history of this absurd case ICANN staff would repeatedly insist the record had been validated and the registrar was compliant, regardless of extensive evidence proving otherwise. Despite a letter sent to ICANN's CEO and an investigation by the Washington Post, the Rape Tube stayed online. more»

NETmundial Multistakeholder Statement Concludes Act One of 2014 Internet Governance Trifecta

On April 24th the NETmundial "Global Multistakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Governance" concluded with the issuance of an eight-page statement. This non-binding document falls short of the "Magna Carta for the Internet" called for in an opening statement delivered by Tim Berners Lee, but it does set the stage for the other two major 2014 events that will affect the course of Internet Governance (IG) - the IGF meeting in Istanbul, Turkey and the ITU meeting in Busan, Korea. more»

Spotlight on African Contributions to Internet Governance Discussions (Part 1: NETmundial)

The internet affects every individual in this world whether directly or indirectly. For example, a medical professional somewhere in Goma, Congo might access the internet to read and post reviews to current medication available and this might have an impact on the kind of medication that he/she recommends to the patient, whether the patient has access to affordable internet or not. Since the internet affects everyone, Africans citizens who are aware of internet governance discussions, expect African stakeholders to engage in these discussions. more»

Mind the Step(-function): Are We Really Less Secure Than We Were a Year Ago?

In January 1995, the RFC Editor published RFC 1752: "The Recommendation for the IP Next Generation Protocol"... The Internet is a security officer's nightmare -- so much openness, so easy to capture packet traffic (and/or spoof it!) and send all manner of unwanted traffic. It was built as a research network, hosted by institutes that were 1/ professionally responsible and 2/ interested in working together collegially. So, in the 19 years since the publication of that statement, have we really failed to address the stated goal? more»

Playing the Long Game at the Internet Governance Poker Table

Poker players say if you can't spot the fish within your first 15 minutes at the table, you're the fish. With that in mind, I'm tempted to ask ICANN President Fadi Chehade who's the fish in the high-stakes game of global Internet governance we're now playing. In 2013, ICANN dramatically changed its course in the global Internet governance debate. For a decade ICANN largely stayed out of the game, allowing stakeholders to defend the multi-stakeholder model where private sector and civil society are on equal footing with governments. But in 2013 ICANN went on the offensive... more»

W3C/IAB "Strengthening the Internet" Workshop: Deadline Monday to Submit Position Papers

How can the open standards organizations of the IETF and W3C "strengthen the Internet" against large-scale pervasive monitoring? That is the topic up for discussion at the "Strengthening the Internet Against Pervasive Monitoring (STRINT)" workshop planned for February 28 and March 1, 2014, and jointly sponsored by the Internet Architecture Board (IAB) and the W3C. The workshop is by invitation-only and has a deadline of Monday, January 20, 2014 (by 11:59 UTC) for submission of either position papers or Internet drafts. more»

Google's Project Shield May Actually Be A Double-Edged Sword

Google has received a lot of press regarding their Project Shield announcement at the Google Ideas Summit. The effort is being applauded as a milestone in social consciousness. While on the surface the endeavor appears admirable, the long-term impact of the service may manifest more than Google had hoped for. Project Shield is an invite-only service that combines Google's DDoS mitigation technology and Page Speed service... more»

Nobody Has Proposed a Sustainable Model for Internet Governance Yet

The idea that the US would maintain a strategic position in the Internet was always a pipe dream. Allowing the US to pick the DNS contractors is one thing, allowing the US the power to arbitrarily shut countries off the net is quite another. And that is what deployment of DNSSEC and the rPKI under the current models would do. The idea that some US congressman would promote a bill to force ICANN to drop Cuba, Palestine or the enemy of the moment off the Internet is really not far fetched. The US government was just shut down for over two weeks in a bizarre act of political theater. more»

Are There Countries Whose Situations Worsened with the Arrival of the Internet?

Are there countries whose situations worsened with the arrival of the internet? I've been arguing that there are lots of examples of countries where technology diffusion has helped democratic institutions deepen. And there are several examples of countries where technology diffusion has been part of the story of rapid democratic transition. But there are no good examples of countries where technology diffusion has been high, and the dictators got nastier as a result. more»

Petition to Decrease US Government Funding to the ITU

I have a "We the People" petition up on the White House website to decrease the US government funding to the ITU from $11M/year to the minimum $22K/year and minimize the USG head-count at meetings, with all of the reclaimed resources going to support Internet governance and diplomacy supporting the multistakeholder Internet governance model. more»

News Briefs

Nauruan Gov't Says Ban on Facebook and Such Protects Citizens from "Abuse, Harassment and Bullying"

Russia Attempts Large Scale Experiment to Isolate Country from Global Internet

Xi Insists on China's Right to Regulate Its Own Internet

China Accused of 'Weaponizing' Global Internet Users to Launch DDoS Attack

Internet Civil Rights Was Signed Into Law by Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff

Kerry's Call for Internet Freedom Naive, Says China

Google Launches 'Project Shield': Anti-DDoS Service to Protect Free Expression Online

Google Discloses Rising Number of Government Requests

New Law in Russia Lets Authorities Take Down Certain Sites Without Trial

Saudi Arabia Objects to Certain Proposed New gTLD Strings Such as .Gay and .Wine

FCC Chief Criticizes Russia for Passing Internet Censorship Bill

WSJ on Leaked Documents, UN Internet Power Grab

Vint Cerf: Internet Freedom Under Threat from Governments Around the World

UK ISPs Ordered to Block Pirate Bay

Iran Blocks HTTPS, 30 Million Reported Losing Email Access

Protests Erupt Over EU's Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement

Exporting SOPA-Like Rules to Other Countries

Websites Go Dark Protesting SOPA and PIPA, Senators Change Course

White House on SOPA: Protecting Intellectual Property Must Not Threaten Open, Innovative Internet

Protect IP Act to Be Amended in Response to Pressure from Technical Community

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